NEW DELHI: The Centre is working on some steps, including imposing hefty fine on vehicle owners, dealers and manufacturers, to check the menace of excessive honking -a nuisance on Indian roads apart from leading to noise pollution.
While "needless or continuous" honking would at tract Rs 500 fine for the first offence and Rs 1,000 for subsequent ones, there is also a proposal to impose Rs 5,000 penalty on owners for installing multi-toned and air horns in vehicles. The fines could be much higher at Rs 1 lakh in case of dealers and owners of garages who install such horns. These proposals, modalities of which are to be worked out, are likely to form part of the comprehensive amendments to the Motor Vehicle Act that the road transport ministry plans to introduce during the monsoon session of Parliament.
The group of state transport ministers has already approved the adoption of `Rules for Road Regulations', which extensively deals with "use of horns". Any violation of the rules would attract a fine of Rs 500 for the first offence and Rs 1,000 for subsequent offence.
While the rules mention that the driver of a motor vehicle may request for overtaking with a short horn or headlight flasher signal, they specify when they shall not use horn. "The driver of a motor vehicle shall not sound the horn needlessly or continuously ... and do so only when he considers himself or others to be in danger," the rules said. Honking in residential areas or in `silence zones' will be prohibited.The rules prohibit use of any multi-toned air horn giving a harsh, shrill, loud or alarming noise.